Saltville Massacre Oct. 1864

larry_cockerham

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Someone did at Ft Pillow? Someone gave no quarter to the Color troops at Ft. Pillow? I think Forrest seems to the best one to figure for the the massacre at Ft Pillow...unless Forrest was jest a figure head of a leader instead of a pillar leadership everyone makes him out to be...If he was the leader everyone makes him out to be then he would of know about giving no quarter to the Color troops..He murder those color troops the same way Manson murder Ms. Tate. Forrest like Manson may not have been there at the act but was their in his direction and leadership of his followers.....Do you think his men would have murder those Color troops? If they did not think Forrest would have approved of it...
Alas, I'm not convinced that anyone murdered anyone. I've read probably 20 accounts and opinions from men far better read on this subject than me. All of them suggest that Forrest was a victim of abuse from biased parties all of whom were looking for any chance to attack him.

Forrest begged for a trial, not something a man with much guilt would have done. The crime of character assassination offered by the press and the parties who made these accusations far exceeded any management deficiencies that Forrest encountered during the time of the battle.

Men who surrendered, then picked up their arms again, were not being managed very well. Were some of these Confederate soldiers biased against black folks? We'll probably never know for sure, though the political and social climate in that part of Tennessee was less than optimum.
 

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kansas

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I would have to agree, no Union large scale massacres that i have been able to find in the civil war. That wont stop me from looking though.
 

K Hale

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Did Forrest just get compared to Charles Manson?
 

diane

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To compare Forrest to Manson and Ft. Pillow to the Tate murders is simply illogical.

It's interesting that many folks think Forrest was psychotic and I can't for the life of me understand why. Ferguson and Quantrill very definitely can be considered somewhat to a lot disturbed, but Forrest was none of these things. He was a constable, and alderman of Memphis four times, hardly positions a psycho would be elected to hold.

Maybe it's because Forrest usually gave blood-curdling surrender-or-die demands. They worked well but for those who said come and get me, these threats didn't materialize. They were a bluff to get a bloodless surrender - why would a kill-crazy nut want a bloodless surrender? They worked maybe too well and made people think Forrest was a savage who had really done things like no quarter and everybody put to the sword. He's the only general who killed 30 people in personal combat but a good many of those were dispatched in an effort to save someone else's life, as well as in defense of his own. He's also the only one who kept track, not because he was notching his saber but because those lives meant something to him - he remembered them because they were men like himself with families and children, fighting for what they believed to be right. He killed in defense of his country and his life, not because he enjoyed it. The few times he talked of these men it was without regret but with no pride either. The last man he killed in the war was a teen-age Union sniper who was pinning his men down as they retreated from the defeat at Selma. The sniper was good, they couldn't get him. Forrest called out to him, "Let us pass, boy! The war is over. I don't want to kill you!" The youngster continued to fire and make casualties, so Forrest was forced to pick him off - a kid the same age as his own son. Of all of them, this last one he regretted the most.

The New York Trib ran a very disparaging obituary when Forrest died, calling him a guerrilla chieftain and asserting he murdered more than some of his men in cold blood. But, a few years later when Wyeth published his book on Forrest, the first bio of him, the New York Trib ran another, very different article headlined: "General Forrest: Not The Man He Is Thought To Be". That is still true today!
 

TerryB

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Forrest was not a cavalier, but someone more in the mold of an Oliver Cromwell. I think one of the main reasons why he and Mosby were so hated by the Union forces is that they got results using unconventional tactics. Even Wheeler had to do some time after he surrendered, mostly because of his accompanying Jeff Davis at the end. The cavaliers were the last of the old breed who had some sense of chivalry and fair play. Yet most historians who wrote in the 20th century, especially Post WWII, couldn't find enough good things to say about Sherman. After you've fire-bombed two nations into the Stone Age, Sherman starts to look like a prophet.
 

larry_cockerham

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To compare Forrest to Manson and Ft. Pillow to the Tate murders is simply illogical.

It's interesting that many folks think Forrest was psychotic and I can't for the life of me understand why. Ferguson and Quantrill very definitely can be considered somewhat to a lot disturbed, but Forrest was none of these things. He was a constable, and alderman of Memphis four times, hardly positions a psycho would be elected to hold.

Maybe it's because Forrest usually gave blood-curdling surrender-or-die demands. They worked well but for those who said come and get me, these threats didn't materialize. They were a bluff to get a bloodless surrender - why would a kill-crazy nut want a bloodless surrender? They worked maybe too well and made people think Forrest was a savage who had really done things like no quarter and everybody put to the sword. He's the only general who killed 30 people in personal combat but a good many of those were dispatched in an effort to save someone else's life, as well as in defense of his own. He's also the only one who kept track, not because he was notching his saber but because those lives meant something to him - he remembered them because they were men like himself with families and children, fighting for what they believed to be right. He killed in defense of his country and his life, not because he enjoyed it. The few times he talked of these men it was without regret but with no pride either. The last man he killed in the war was a teen-age Union sniper who was pinning his men down as they retreated from the defeat at Selma. The sniper was good, they couldn't get him. Forrest called out to him, "Let us pass, boy! The war is over. I don't want to kill you!" The youngster continued to fire and make casualties, so Forrest was forced to pick him off - a kid the same age as his own son. Of all of them, this last one he regretted the most.

The New York Trib ran a very disparaging obituary when Forrest died, calling him a guerrilla chieftain and asserting he murdered more than some of his men in cold blood. But, a few years later when Wyeth published his book on Forrest, the first bio of him, the New York Trib ran another, very different article headlined: "General Forrest: Not The Man He Is Thought To Be". That is still true today!
If you ever defend me half as well as you defend Bedford Forrest, I'll be a well defended man. I only hope I deserve it half as much as he does.
 

Nathanb1

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To compare Forrest to Manson and Ft. Pillow to the Tate murders is simply illogical.

It's interesting that many folks think Forrest was psychotic and I can't for the life of me understand why. Ferguson and Quantrill very definitely can be considered somewhat to a lot disturbed, but Forrest was none of these things. He was a constable, and alderman of Memphis four times, hardly positions a psycho would be elected to hold.

Maybe it's because Forrest usually gave blood-curdling surrender-or-die demands. They worked well but for those who said come and get me, these threats didn't materialize. They were a bluff to get a bloodless surrender - why would a kill-crazy nut want a bloodless surrender? They worked maybe too well and made people think Forrest was a savage who had really done things like no quarter and everybody put to the sword. He's the only general who killed 30 people in personal combat but a good many of those were dispatched in an effort to save someone else's life, as well as in defense of his own. He's also the only one who kept track, not because he was notching his saber but because those lives meant something to him - he remembered them because they were men like himself with families and children, fighting for what they believed to be right. He killed in defense of his country and his life, not because he enjoyed it. The few times he talked of these men it was without regret but with no pride either. The last man he killed in the war was a teen-age Union sniper who was pinning his men down as they retreated from the defeat at Selma. The sniper was good, they couldn't get him. Forrest called out to him, "Let us pass, boy! The war is over. I don't want to kill you!" The youngster continued to fire and make casualties, so Forrest was forced to pick him off - a kid the same age as his own son. Of all of them, this last one he regretted the most.

The New York Trib ran a very disparaging obituary when Forrest died, calling him a guerrilla chieftain and asserting he murdered more than some of his men in cold blood. But, a few years later when Wyeth published his book on Forrest, the first bio of him, the New York Trib ran another, very different article headlined: "General Forrest: Not The Man He Is Thought To Be". That is still true today!
I was just waiting for you to gallop in like John Morton and fire away. Well done!
 

5fish

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Defending Evil.............a lawyer you must be...

He's also the only one who kept track, not because he was notching his saber but because those lives meant something to him - he remembered them because they were men like himself with families and children, fighting for what they believed to be right.
This line says it all one needs to know about Forrest. This act of keeping track of ones kills is akin to collecting trophies not about remembering families. He was collecting trophies with each kill because no soldier needs help in remembering families of the people he has killed. Just ask a soldier....

Maybe it's because Forrest usually gave blood-curdling surrender-or-die demands. They worked well but for those who said come and get me, these threats didn't materialize. They were a bluff to get a bloodless surrender - why would a kill-crazy nut want a bloodless surrender?
LET'S BE THANKFUL, the union officers did surrender for Forrest would have had more notches and more massacres to account for...

He kept trophies nothing more needs to be said about a man who keeps trophies of the men he has killed...Forrest prized trophies were notches on his saber...evil
 

Southland

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Defending Evil.............a lawyer you must be...

This line says it all one needs to know about Forrest. This act of keeping track of ones kills is akin to collecting trophies not about remembering families. He was collecting trophies with each kill because no soldier needs help in remembering families of the people he has killed. Just ask a soldier....

LET'S BE THANKFUL, the union officers did surrender for Forrest would have had more notches and more massacres to account for...

He kept trophies nothing more needs to be said about a man who keeps trophies of the men he has killed...Forrest prized trophies were notches on his saber...evil
There is one thing you need to realize. The 'Book of List' about the Civil War list Nathan Bedford Forrest as the #1 General of the Confederate Army.
 

diane

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5fish,

Well, since your feelings are so strong on the subject we'll leave it lie. You are arguing from a strictly emotional position and there is no point in further discussion! There are some who feel the same way about Sherman, after all, and no amount of rational discussion will alter that. I will, though, strongly disagree with the label 'evil'. Nor did Forrest collect trophies - you're reading something into my statement that is clearly not there. Bloody Bill's men had scalps hanging off their belts and horses' bridles - that's trophies. You might remember that the war in Tennessee was particularly ugly, truly neighbor against neighbor. Forrest did indeed have reason to remember at least some of the men and their families as he had known them before the war. There are many sorrowful stories of brothers shooting brothers on their parents' front porch, and so forth. That is the hard truth and great tragedy of civil war.
 

larry_cockerham

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Defending Evil.............a lawyer you must be...

This line says it all one needs to know about Forrest. This act of keeping track of ones kills is akin to collecting trophies not about remembering families. He was collecting trophies with each kill because no soldier needs help in remembering families of the people he has killed. Just ask a soldier....

LET'S BE THANKFUL, the union officers did surrender for Forrest would have had more notches and more massacres to account for...

He kept trophies nothing more needs to be said about a man who keeps trophies of the men he has killed...Forrest prized trophies were notches on his saber...evil
Somehow you missed the content of Diane's post. There's a hugh difference between "trophies" like my college roommate's collection of ears from Vietnam and the memories Forrest had of killing folks in combat. Sleepless nights in regret for the loss of life do not trophies make. N.B. Forrest was no trophy hunter, he was just trying to do his part to win a war he didn't start. He voted 'no' to war a couple of times before it began and hundreds of times afterward. What he did, far more times than the opposite, was save lifes, in many cases the lives of the enemy.

Study his character, though I'd be surprised if that gets a fair shot. I began reading about him fifteen years ago, having seen many opinions similar to what you've expressed. I thought that it was unlikely any man of his stature could be that bad. After a few years, I discovered the man. I believe in both Santa and N.B. Forrest, with no regrets.
 

larry_cockerham

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I think I would go seek a different roommate who didn't have an affinity for human body parts.
I had known George two years earlier before he was drafted. His mind was no where near the same, but he was relatively docile. Like many college men of his time (our school had a male-female ratio of 12.5 to 1), ears were not always paramount in his focus.
 

K Hale

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If you say so. I just got a Jeffrey Dahmer vibe.

FWIW, the gender ratio where I went to college in the early-mid 1990s was the opposite of yours (Cal Poly school of agriculture). Some classes were entirely female. However, all but one of the profs were male.
 

larry_cockerham

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If you say so. I just got a Jeffrey Dahmer vibe.

FWIW, the gender ratio where I went to college in the early-mid 1990s was the opposite of yours (Cal Poly school of agriculture). Some classes were entirely female. However, all but one of the profs were male.
George didn't actually have the ears, just the memories and no notches in his knife. There was a Friday afternoon exodus of cars heading for Greensboro and the UNCG women's college. We poor mountain boys with worn shoe leather stayed in Raleigh and did the best we could. We even dated the semi-beautiful girls at nearby Meredith College.
 

5fish

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Look at this..

Ferguson, Quantrill, and Forrest all killed/murdered men with their own hands and led and/or allowed their men to commit massacres. The first two are considered by most as thugs/killers but the last one(Forrest) is a confederate hero.....What gives??

Do you not see the inconsistency in this hero reasoning...?

These men were the same just with different names....I admit Forrest outclassed the others in style but in the end he was just like the other two, a murderer....
 


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